Strategy At a Glance

Strategy Financial - Deadline for success

Deadline for success

At what date will savings and credit run out?

Break Even Point

Break Even point

Determine your breakeven point. This is the amount of money the company must generate to pay both business and personal monthly bills. This is the most important goal for your company to achieve.

Falling short of this amount requires you to use savings or credit to make up the difference. You have only a limited amount of savings and credit available. When this is exhausted, your business will fail. When your company can achieve this amount of revenue consistently, you have succeeded.

Are there any expenses – personal or business – that you can lower or cut in order to bring down the breakeven point number?

Fill out the chart to set your monthly revenue goals. Be sure to make adjustments to account for the seasonal slow periods where you live.
*Monthly revenue chart

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Business Form

What business form will the business use?

Choose a legal business format for the company. The simplest, fastest, and least expensive option is to form it as a sole-proprietor. Other options include various types of corporations, partnerships, and a limited partnership. Each form has advantages and disadvantages. An attorney or CPA can advise you if one of these other forms will better serve your needs.

The format of the business you choose affects how you file taxes and what business liabilities you are personally responsible for.

Determine Seasonal Effects

Determine your seasonal slow period

For most of the country, there is a seasonal slow period for residential cleaning. Typically this slow season begins about December 15th when holiday decorations go up and lasts through April 15th – tax day – when the weather starts to warm. For established companies, the average income during a slow season month is about half that of the average of the other months. The slow period might be the exact opposite for Florida or Arizona due to weather differences.

Ask your supplier and other cleaners to verify when this slowdown occurs in your area.

Magic Numbers

Magic numbers

Fill out the Magic Numbers Form to determine critical numbers needed to measure growth and profitability and to establish goals.

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Choose Service Level*

Establish you service level

Determine what level of service you will offer. Use the Service Level Chart to help determine what is appropriate for your chosen target market.

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City of Primary Location

City of Primary Location

Sometimes the city you actually live in may not be your best official address. Google, Yelp, and Angie’s List searches sort according to your official address. Would a neighboring city be more advantageous for you to use?

Method of Cleaning

Choose a method of cleaning

State your primary method of cleaning. The method could include: truckmounted steam cleaning, portable steam cleaning, bonnet cleaning, Host cleaning, etc.

Service Levels are Inline

Make sure level of service and price agree

Check off this task ONLY when your service level, price, and cleaning pace are in line with what is appropriate for your chosen target market. This task is crucial because it ensures your target market will receive a good value.

Services Offered

Establish your company’s primary services

Do not worry about listing every conceivable service you could offer.

Target Market*

Define your target market

Describe your desired target market. Include categories such as: married, professional, residential, etc. Do NOT say anyone who calls you!

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Vision Statement

Complete the Vision Statement

Use the sample Vision Statement to develop your personal vision statement. Post this in a spot where it can be reviewed on a regular basis. The more details you can provide, the more helpful it will be.

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Cleaning Pace*

Measure your pace

Determine your carpet cleaning pace and write it in the space. Pace is determined by calculating the average square footage you clean from the time you pull up to the house until the time you drive away. Measure carpet cleaning jobs only for one week and determine the average number of square feet cleaned per hour. Be sure to note if this is cleanable space or total room square footage.

Guarantee

Create a guarantee

Fill in what you have for a guarantee or spotting warranty.

Minimum Charges

Establish a minimum

Write in your standard minimum charge.

Price for Carpet Cleaning*

Establish your pricing

Determine an appropriate charge for carpet cleaning (excluding protector, etc.) according to the target market and level of service you have chosen to offer. Fill in your charge and state whether it is based on actual room dimensions or only cleanable space.

Price for Protector

Establish a price for protector

Determine an appropriate charge for carpet protector according to the target market and level of service you have chosen to offer.

Price for Upholstery Cleaning

Establish upholstery pricing

Determine an appropriate charge for upholstery cleaning according to the target market and level of service you have chosen to offer. Fill in your charge and state whether it is based on the length or piece (like sofa, club chair, etc.).

Service Territory*

Determine a service area

Give a general description of your normal service area. List the specific cities covered.

What is Included*

Decide on services and extras

Write in what is normally included in your standard cleaning charge. For example: vacuuming, moving furniture, carpet protector, corner guards, wiping down baseboards, specialty stain spotting. The included services should be appropriate to the rate you are charging.